Media and marketing are always looking for the next slogan, the next hook, the next big thing. If one doesn’t come along fast enough, they’ll try to invent one. Wikipedia summarizes this age old marketing concept:
The next big thing is a concept in marketing that refers to a product or idea that will allow for a high amount of sales for that product and related products. Marketers believe that by finding or creating the next big thing they will spark a cultural revolution that results in this sales increase.
If you can get associated with the big thing of the moment, there’s authority to be had and money to be made. That’s part of why a bunch of people get their noses out of joint when they aren’t invited to pay thousands of dollars to attend an O’Reilly Web 2.0 conference.
That’s all there is to John Markoff’s Web 3.0 article. An attempt to get a little traction, and maybe create a religion in the process. A little L. Ron kitchen work, web style.
Nick Carr hopes Web 3.0 will be better. If not, someone can toss Web 4.0, 5.0 and 6.0 against the wall until one of them sticks. Nick quotes Markoff quoting some cat who’s a promoter (that’s a funny word in this context) of artificial intelligence. He thinks Web 3.0 is spooky.
I think what’s even more spooky is when people create needless jargon and we all jump in line to help publicize it. I also think more than a little of the intelligence that led to the premature buzz (such as it is) about Web 3.0 is, well, artificial. Like the plastic apple in a bowl, it looks tasty pretty from afar. But one bite tells you there’s nothing to it but artifice and air.
On the other hand, how silly is it of me to write a post suggesting that we not talk about Web 3.0?
I tried, and failed, not to write this post. I am doing the very thing I think we shouldn’t do- take the bait and run with it. Does the fact that I know it make it any less culpable?
I don’t know. Hopefully I can resist writing another post about Web 3.0 for a long time. Maybe forever.
Allison Krauss was right- sometimes we say it best when we say nothing at all.